The Stonehenge Alliance  Press statement
22:30 11 September 2017
UNESCO ignored as damaging Stonehenge scheme announced
The Stonehenge Alliance is shocked by Highways England’s A303 Stonehenge “preferred route” announcement today.
The proposed scheme, at huge expense (£1.6bn), an increase of a further £200m, would cause severe and permanent damage to the archaeological landscape of the World Heritage Site (WHS) in direct conflict with international advice to the UK Government earlier this year. 
UNESCO made it clear in reporting to the World Heritage Committee that
“It is not considered satisfactory to suggest that the benefits from a 2.9km tunnel to the centre of the property can offset significant damage from lengths of four lane approach roads in cuttings elsewhere in the property.”
The proposed c.2.9km (1.8 miles) tunnel would leave some c.2.5km (c 1.6 miles) of four-lane expressway, substantially in cuttings, well within the WHS. There are very serious implications for the Mesolithic site of Blick Mead, as well as a number of sites of the Neolithic and Bronze Ages for which the WHS designation was given.
Kate Fielden of CPRE and RESCUE, speaking for the Alliance, said:
“We are shocked at Highways England’s indifference to UNESCO’s advice. The project needs a complete re-think, not a minor tweak which still threatens major harm to this iconic landscape. The potential risk of loss, along with Avebury, of Stonehenge’s World Heritage Status casts shame upon our country and those responsible for caring for our heritage.”
Please read our petition, sign and share whether you live in the UK our abroad. http://stonehengealliance.org.uk/our-campaign/petition/
Details of the preferred route are available on Highways England’s webpage
(1). The Stonehenge Alliance is supported by Ancient Sacred Landscape Network, Campaign for Better Transport, Campaign to Protect Rural England, Friends of the Earth, and RESCUE: The British Archaeological Trust.
(2) Stonehenge Report and Decision, 41st Session of UNESCO’s World Heritage Committee, 6 July 2017. See page 139 for text of decision. Also screen shot of pdf below: